Morning Hits: Stalberg, Ribeiro, Hendricks, Clarkson, Elias, Nabokov, Streit, Boyes, Cervenka and the Blues

  • Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Times: Blackhawks made winger Viktor Stalberg a scratch last night and coach Joel Quenneville wouldn’t give details as to the reason. A source said that Stalberg was at odds with the coaches about his roll in round one. He only received 58 seconds total of power play time in the first three games of round one, despite averaging 2:11 per game during the regular season. He only recorded two power play assists all season.

    “I had a conversation with him,” Quenneville said. “He knows how it stands, what the situation is. We’ll leave it at that.”

    Quenneville on if Stalberg could work his way back into the lineup.

    “Absolutely,” he said. “Things change in our business quickly, whether it’s health or decisions based on play. We’ll visit as things go along.”

  • Stephen Whyno of the Washington Times: Capitals UFA second line center, Mike Ribeiro (33), is looking for a four or five year deal.

    “I don’t see myself getting worse,” Ribeiro said. “It can only get better. I can be out there. I can work out more. There’s a lot of room there to improve and, you know, that’s why I don’t think I should have less than four or five years.”

    Capitals Matt Hendricks is also looking for a long term deal.

  • Rich Chere of the Star-Ledger: Devils GM Lou Lamoriello has held talks with UFA David Clarkson, but nothing with regards to Patrik Elias. No financial discussions have taken place with Clarkson though.

    “We’ll continue to work on it. We’ve certainly started the process, but until (contracts) are complete there is nothing done,” Lamoriello said [yesterday].

  • Zach Braziller of the NY Post: Islanders UFAs Evgeni Nabokov, Mark Streit and Brad Boyes all hope to return next season. Nabokov’s agent spoke with GM Garth Snow about four weeks ago, but nothing since then.

    “I think Garth will make his decision,” Nabokov said. “I told him I would like to stay, but we were fighting for the playoffs and nothing was going on. Now we have to see.”

  • Wes Gilbertson: Flames center Roman Cervenka signed a three year contract to return to the KHL. Dmitry Chesnokov: SKA acquired Cervenka’s rights from HC Lev for two players, then signed him.
  • John Shannon: The NHL has announced that there will be two games at Yankee Stadium next Jan. 26th and 29th. The Devils will play the Rangers on the 26th and Islanders will play the Rangers on the 29th, with the Rangers being the away team for both games.
  • Andy Strickland of True Hockey: Blues defenseman Alex Pietrangelo and Kevin Shattenkirk maxed out their player bonuses again this season. Pietrangelo reached his A-Level bonuses for assists, ice time, blocked shots, and points.

    The are several categories a D-man can earn team bonuses including goals (10), assists (25), points (40), ice time (among top 4 on team), +/- (top 3 on team among D-men), blocked shots (among top 2 D-men on team), points per game (0.49 points per game). Obviously these numbers are pro-rated this season to reflect the 48 game season.

    Strickland thinks the last thing the GM Doug Armstrong needs to do is to overreact to negative things surrounding the Blues. They need to find the right balance of offense and defense. Many of their players were drafted high due to their offensive ability, and they need to utilize their instincts and playmaking ability more often. Being too conservative against the Kings may have been one of their downfalls.

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